IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

Multiperson utility

  • Baucells, Manel
  • Shapley, Lloyd S.

We approach the problem of preference aggregation by endowing both individuals and coalitions with partially-ordered or incomplete preferences for decision under risk. Restricting attention to the case of complete individual preferences, and assuming complete preferences for some pairs of agents (interpersonal comparisons of utility units), we discover that the Extended Pareto Rule (if two disjoint coalitions A and B prefer x to y, then so does the coalition A[union or logical sum]B) imposes a "no arbitrage" condition in the terms of utility comparison between agents. Furthermore, if all the individuals and pairs have complete preferences and certain non-degeneracy conditions are met, then we witness the emergence of a complete preference ordering for coalitions of all sizes. The corresponding utilities are a weighted sum of individual utilities, with the n-1 independent weights obtained from the preferences of n-1 pairs forming a spanning tree in the group.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Games and Economic Behavior.

Volume (Year): 62 (2008)
Issue (Month): 2 (March)
Pages: 329-347

in new window

Handle: RePEc:eee:gamebe:v:62:y:2008:i:2:p:329-347
Contact details of provider: Web page:

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Manel Baucells & Lloyd S. Shapley, 2000. "Multiperson Utility," Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers 0078, Econometric Society.
  2. Costis Skiadas, 1997. "Conditioning and Aggregation of Preferences," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(2), pages 347-368, March.
  3. DHILLON, Amrita & MERTENS, Jean-François, . "Relative utilitarianism," CORE Discussion Papers RP 1398, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  4. Dubra, Juan & Maccheroni, Fabio & Ok, Efe A., 2004. "Expected utility theory without the completeness axiom," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 115(1), pages 118-133, March.
  5. Amrita Dhillon, 1998. "Extended Pareto rules and relative utilitarianism," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 15(4), pages 521-542.
  6. SCHMEIDLER, David, . "Competitive equilibria in markets with a continuum of traders and incomplete preferences," CORE Discussion Papers RP 62, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  7. Truman F. Bewley, 1986. "Knightian Decision Theory: Part 1," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 807, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  8. Sen, Amartya, 1970. "Interpersonal Aggregation and Partial Comparability," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 38(3), pages 393-409, May.
  9. Saposnik, Rubin, 1975. "Social Choice with Continuous Expression of Individual Preferences," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 43(4), pages 683-90, July.
  10. Peter A. Diamond, 1967. "Cardinal Welfare, Individualistic Ethics, and Interpersonal Comparison of Utility: Comment," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 75, pages 765.
  11. Sen, Amartya K, 1977. "On Weights and Measures: Informational Constraints in Social Welfare Analysis," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 45(7), pages 1539-72, October.
  12. Luca Rigotti & Chris Shannon=20, 2002. "Uncertainty and Risk in Financial Markets," Game Theory and Information 0201001, EconWPA.
  13. Fishburn, Peter C, 1973. "A Mixture-Set Axiomatization of Conditional Subjective Expected Utility," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 41(1), pages 1-25, January.
  14. Manel Baucells & Rakesh K. Sarin, 2003. "Group Decisions with Multiple Criteria," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 49(8), pages 1105-1118, August.
  15. Frank DeMeyer & Charles R. Plott, 1971. "A Welfare Function Using "Relative Intensity" of Preference," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 85(1), pages 179-186.
  16. Edi Karni, 2003. "Impartiality and interpersonal comparisons of variations in well-being," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 21(1), pages 95-111, 08.
  17. Luce, R Duncan & Krantz, David H, 1971. "Conditional Expected Utility," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 39(2), pages 253-71, March.
  18. Kalai, Ehud & Schmeidler, David, 1977. "Aggregation Procedure for Cardinal Preferences: A Formulation and Proof of Samuelson's Impossibility Conjecture," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 45(6), pages 1431-38, September.
  19. Sobel, Joel, 2001. "Manipulation of Preferences and Relative Utilitarianism," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 196-215, October.
  20. John C. Harsanyi, 1955. "Cardinal Welfare, Individualistic Ethics, and Interpersonal Comparisons of Utility," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 63, pages 309.
  21. James S. Dyer & Rakesh K. Sarin, 1979. "Group Preference Aggregation Rules Based on Strength of Preference," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 25(9), pages 822-832, September.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:gamebe:v:62:y:2008:i:2:p:329-347. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Shamier, Wendy)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.